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Wire Cleaner and Annealer

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I have a relative who described his occupation in 1925 as a 'wire cleaner and annealer'. Has anybody any ideas as to what this job was? Many thanks for looking!

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From Wiki: Annealing (metallurgy), a heat treatment that alters the microstructure of a material causing changes in properties such as strength and hardness

Presumably the wire would be cleaned or degreased before this operation.

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From Wiki: Annealing (metallurgy), a heat treatment that alters the microstructure of a material causing changes in properties such as strength and hardness

Presumably the wire would be cleaned or degreased before this operation.

The wire cleaning was done by Joe Cocker before he became famous - he used The Grease Band ... probably ...

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From Wiki: Annealing (metallurgy), a heat treatment that alters the microstructure of a material causing changes in properties such as strength and hardness

Presumably the wire would be cleaned or degreased before this operation.

Annealing is a treatment which softens a metal (rather than hardening it) by heat treatment. Softening makes the metal mote malleable (bendable) and ductile (stretchable) at low temperatures, which of course wire would have to be to be of any use, - it needs to be flexible (soft) with easily breaking.

The process involves heating the metal to a high temperature and then cooling it at a controlled rate which determines the crystal size within the metal and hence its physical properties.

Heat treatment of metals often leaves an oxide film on the surface which can be removed by cleaning. A common way of doing this is "pickling" in acid to dissolve it off but there are other ways, e.g. the use of abrasives and brushes.

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The reason that "new" wire or wire cut and/or bent into blanks for cold forgeing, could need to be annealed is that it can become "Work hardened" Small localised patches where the molecules become changed by stress. These can result in tiny fractures in the finished article.

When you make for instance a clipping tool from high carbon steel, there is no way of testing it without it being hardened and tempered and put on the machine. If (and as an apprentice it happened to me a few times) the press is set up and the clipping tool does not work efficiently, it would need to be annealed to return it to a workable state so that it could be filed or worked in some way to get it right. It would then be hardened again. Then you got in trouble with the Foreman for wasting production time. :angry:

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The reason that "new" wire or wire cut and/or bent into blanks for cold forgeing, could need to be annealed is that it can become "Work hardened" Small localised patches where the molecules become changed by stress. These can result in tiny fractures in the finished article.

When you make for instance a clipping tool from high carbon steel, there is no way of testing it without it being hardened and tempered and put on the machine. If (and as an apprentice it happened to me a few times) the press is set up and the clipping tool does not work efficiently, it would need to be annealed to return it to a workable state so that it could be filed or worked in some way to get it right. It would then be hardened again. Then you got in trouble with the Foreman for wasting production time. :angry:

A fantastic wealth of information here, thank you all for sharing it all, much appreciated. My G G Grandfather was listed as a 'wire cleaner' and later a 'wire cleaner and annealer'. Is the same job or can I have the vain hope of him being promoted in some way? Anyhow, thank you all again.

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